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Ayurveda Cleansing Dish: Kitchari

Kitchari is a traditional Ayurvedic dish which is very easy to digest but nourishing and purifying and it is a great way to cleanse your digestive system without having to go on a strict detox diet.

Kitchari is similar to stew (or porridge) and is made with mung beans, vegetables, basmati rice and spices. It’s also tri-doshic meaning that it’s suitable for all Doshas. The traditional Kitchari is cooked with ghee (clarified butter) but this recipe does not use any ghee and it’s suitable for vegan.

(If you don’t know your Dosha, the Ayurvedic mind-body type, click here to take my Dosha quiz!

I first made Kitchari a few years ago and I fell in love with this super nourishing dish. I’ve experimented with a number of different recipes since, as there are so many different versions online but the recipe below seems to work well for me. It is very easy to make.

All you need is basmati rice (or you can also use brown rice or quinoa), mung beans, seasonal vegetables and spices. I like to cook with minimal ingredients (so it’s nice and simple). I only use a few spices and have two or three vegetables. You can also make Kitchari according to your Dosha, by cooking with vegetables and spices that balances your Dosha.

Take my Dosha quiz and discover your Dosha (Ayurvedic Mind-Body Type) and then find out what foods and spices are recommended for your Dosha by following the link below!

Foods and Spices to Balance Vata Dosha

Foods and Spices to Balance Pitta Dosha

Foods and Spices to Balance Kapha Dosha

Ingredients:

Serves 4

For rice and mung beans:

1/2 cup of basmati rice (white or brown, or you can also use quinoa)
1/4 cup of split yellow mung beans or whole mung beans (which have green skins)
1 tablespoon organic sesame oil for Vata, organic coconut oil for Pitta or organic sunflower oil for Kapha
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
1 teaspoon of coriander seeds
1 teaspoon of ground turmeric
¼ teaspoon of mineral salt
1 teaspoon of chopped or grated fresh ginger
3-4 cups of water

For vegetables:

1 tablespoon organic sesame oil for Vata, organic coconut oil for Pitta or organic sunflower oil for Kapha
¼ teaspoon of mineral salt
¼ mustard seeds
Optional: Pinch of asafoetida
2-3 cups of vegetables (carrots, sweet potatoes and greens)
Juice of half lime (per serving)
Few leaves of coriander or basil for garnish

Method:

For rice and mung beans:

Rinse rice and mung beans. Soak rice for up to an hour and soak mung beans as per the instructions on the package. Whole mung beans should be soaked overnight.

In a large pot, warm the oil over medium heat and add cumin seeds and coriander seeds until you can smell a nice aroma.

Then add the rest of the spices and stir well and cook for about 1 minute. Stir well. Drain rice and mung beans and add them and mix well together for a few minutes till rice and beans start to stick to the side of the pot.

Add water and stir well. Then cover the pot and bring to boil. Stir and simmer at medium heat for about 45 minutes. Stir occasionally.

For vegetables:

In a large pot, warm the oil over medium heat and add spices until the mustard seeds starts to pop.

Add water and vegetables and stir well. Then cover the pot and bring to boil. Stir and simmer at medium heat until the vegetables are soft. Stir occasionally.

Combine vegetables with rice and mung beans and gently mix together.

The finished dish should be creamy and stew-like. If you prefer a soupier consistency, add more water.

Serve with juice of half lime and sprinkle on some fresh coriander or basil.

This recipe is for 4 servings. Remaining bowls can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. It is always best to have any food fresh so I don’t usually keep leftovers refrigerated for more than 24 hours and never in the freezer!

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Risa Kawamoto (she/her)

Risa Kawamoto (she/her)

Hi, I’m Risa! I’m a certified Transformational Coach, Yoga Teacher, Ayurvedic Lifestyle Advisor and the host of the Journey Podcast.

I am passionate about guiding and supporting purpose-driven individuals, discovering their True Self and inner purpose, and creating a fulfilling, meaningful & joyful life, using the powerful tools of Ayurveda, Yoga and transformational coaching.

I am excited to guide and support you as you begin your journey to discovering your True Self and creating a fulfilling, meaningful & joyful life!